Master Of The M&A Universe

Stephen Volk has taken Shearman & Sterling to the top

The phone call arrived at midnight on Friday, Jan. 31, just as Stephen R. Volk was preparing to go to sleep. On the line was Morgan Stanley & Co. General Counsel Jonathan M. Clark, who alerted the corporate lawyer that the investment bank's landmark merger with retail broker Dean Witter, Discover & Co. was on--and had to be sewn up as fast as humanly possible. The reason for the rush: rampant rumors that Morgan Stanley was cooking up a deal with PaineWebber Inc. While the buzz was wrong, reporters were sniffing around furiously to see if anything was up.

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